I know, there are no rules for grocery shopping, but there should be. I throw myself into a frantic tizzy at the thought of going into the store by pre-experiencing all sorts of injustices and while I'm there, my Indian skin burns hot with rage as I experience aforementioned injustices. I had to take a valium just to write this post; that's how intense my grocery store issues are. This post is part-Wednesday-post and part working-through-issues-in-therapy. Sooo...let's get started!
1. Do Not Stand Too Close To Me
For years now, I've wondered why there isn't a demarkation between the person who is checking out and the person right behind that person. We live in a civilized society and yet there is nothing to indicate a person must wait at a suitable distance behind the paying person?? We can put a man on the moon but not THIS?! It's insanity! Allow me to describe in detail what happens to me (and perhaps it happens to you, too?):
I am checking out my groceries like a normal person. The person behind me with his or her cart buts up against me. In. My. Business. What, I ask, is the hurry? Why do you need to stand right next to me? Why do you keep bumping your cart into me?
So this is what I've started doing: instead of pushing my cart in front, I pull it behind me, thereby allowing ample personal space between myself and the person behind me, who is clearly irritated that I've got my cart between him/her and getting his/her crap on the checkout counter.
My proposal, which should be obvious: a bright yellow line indicating where you must WAIT until you can move your cart forward and place your crap on the checkout counter.
2. I Need To Make My Purchases And Leave. Now.
I hate shopping. I know, you are shocked. But I hate it. I detest being in any kind of store. All I want to do is go in, get my stuff, and get out as fast as I can. And you know what gets in the way of me doing that at grocery stores? Clerks who are chatty with each other.
There is a high-end grocery store in my neighborhood and I am appalled at how unprofessional the clerks are. I know, I know: there is some serious shit going down in Syria, the economy is not fully recovered, we have no idea if Brody is guilty, and oh-fer-godsake DETROIT has filed for bankruptcy. It's bad out there. I shouldn't be complaining about clerks having a little fun, but I am and I will.
I am in your store to make purchases. It is YOUR job to ensure that I get the hell out of your store to make room for more customers. I cannot stand it when I show up in a checkout line and there is a pause while checkout clerks chat about their evening plans or whatever. I do not care. Just get me the hell out of the store. PLEASE.
My proposal, which should be obvious: Do. Your. Job. FOR THE LOVE OF GOD.
3. Can't We Just All Shop Together?
Your shopping trip to the grocery is just as important as mine. I get it. But get your cart out of my way. Please. I would like everyone to find a way to move about the store without leaving his/her cart obstructing other shoppers. It's rude.
My proposal, which should be obvious: If you're going to browse (which I do not get), park your cart off to the side, out of the way of customers moving to and fro. Please.
4. I Don't Want to Know What You're Talking About
Cell phones. In grocery stores. People don't understand how incredibly obnoxious and loud they sound talking on their cell phones in grocery stores. I know this is a no-win for me, but if I don't say something now, I will regret my silence later. People having non-food conversations in grocery stores sound like idiots. Really.
When my phone rings in the store, I look to see who it is and IF it is my husband, I answer it because I know he's calling to let me know we need three heads of garlic, not two. And that's important shit. But if my girlfriend is calling? I will not pick up. My mom? Not. Picking. Up. If it's urgent she'll call back or she'll call Eric and he'll call me to tell me what a crap daughter I am for not picking up in the first place. But you will not find me walking through the grocery store chatting about non-grocery list issues. Ever.
My proposal, which should be obvious: Do not answer the phone. Unless it's someone adding items to your grocery list.
5. Be Nice to People.
This really should be obvious. We are in this place of abundance, a place of nurturing. We can be rude to each other and to the people who work in this amazing place: the grocery. Quit it.
Everyone shopping the grocery has probably had a day like yours and everyone working there isn't getting paid a whole lot or having all that much fun and likely has a second (or third) job: so be nice. Be civil. Be kind. It doesn't take a lot. If you don't think that's worth something, then you are a douche bag.
My proposal, which should be obvious: Don't be an ass. Be considerate of other shoppers. When someone at a store asks how you are doing, answer, and then ask him/her how he/she is doing. And always thank store employees for a good job. Don't you wish someone did that for you?
Happy (and brief) shopping all!